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Second Annual Karakul Youth Conservationist Program
Livestock Update, February 1999
Mark Wahlberg, Extension Animal Scientist, 4-H Livestock, Animal & Poultry Sciences, Virginia Tech
Old Gjerpen Farm
Since his introduction to Karakuls, an ancient breed of sheep, at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival (MS&WF) seven years ago, Mr. Larson has come to value the many excellent qualities of this rare breed of sheep. Karakuls originated in Russia and with their naturally colored, long stapled, lustrous fleece, are renown for "Persian wool" obtained from their young lambs. To enable others to share in the joy of helping preserve this unique breed Old Gjerpen Farm (OGF) will award one purebred registered ewe lamb to a young shepherd on May 2, 1999, at the MS&WF.
Objectives: The purpose in giving a lamb to a young shepherd is to raise awareness of the importance of preserving heritage breeds and help others to:
- Experience first hand the many values of Karakul sheep.
- Learn about the various uses of colored wool and /or effective
- marketing of fleeces.
- Learn about the life cycle of sheep.
- Experience caring for and exhibiting a wool breed of sheep.
Requirements: The following criteria must be met in order to be considered for selection:
- Should be between 12 and 18 years old.
- If selected, be present to receive the lamb at the MS&WF on May 2, 1999.
- Agree to exhibit the lamb at least twice in 1999 at (1) a county fair or local sheep show; and (2) the state fair in the state where the recipient lives.
- Agree to breed the lamb to a colored ram in the fall of 1999.
- Agree to either use the lamb's first fleece to personally make a woolen item or sell the fleece to a spinner, felter or weaver.
- Submit a brief typed project report, with pictures, no later than April 30, 2000.
|Application:||Any youth interested in being considered for selection should submit a one-page typed application to: Richard Larson, Old Gjerpen Farm, 11917 Airlea Drive, Nokesville, VA 20181, by April 15, 1999. The application should include your phone number and:
Describe yourself and your experience with animals;
Explain your interest in sheep; and,
Answers the question: "Why I would like to help preserve a rare breed?"
Information about conservation of breeds may be obtained from the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy. Their e-mail address is: email@example.com. Phone: (919) 542-5704. Information about the MS&WF can be obtained either from their web site: http://www.sheepandwoolfestival.org/ or by calling (410) 531-3647.
(Note: Sarah Lohman, an Orange County 4-H member, was the 1998 winner.)
Virginia Cooperative Extension